Commission on Next Localism

The policy and practice agenda for local government is about to change dramatically – but while this is a profoundly challenging moment, it is also an opportunity for councils to take control of their own destiny. NLGN’s Commission on Next Localism is looking forward: providing the strategic thinking that councils need to innovate out of crisis and emerge stronger.

The Commission has three key goals:

  • Providing a shared R&D function for all local government, helping senior officials, partners and service users to think through the long-term challenges
  • Encouraging real-time learning on how local authorities are coping with the cuts, using surveys and case studies to help draw out and share innovation
  • Making a powerful case to central government for devolving more financial power and decision-making to localities

The commissioners are:

Chair: Rafael Behr
Chief Political Commentator, the New Statesman  
Chris Bull
Chief Executive, Herefordshire County Council
Indy Johar
Social Entrepreneur and Consultant
Cllr Peter John
Leader, London Borough of Southwark
Simon Parker
Director, New Local Government Network
Dr Andrew Povey
Leader of Surrey County Council
Sheena Ramsey
Chief Executive, Knowsley Council
Catherine Staite
Director Inlogov, University of Birmingham

Rafael Behr, Chief Political Commentator, the New Statesman and chair of the Commission on Next Localism, said:

“Across the political spectrum there is agreement that radical ideas are needed to keep public services in this country working. There is also an emerging consensus that innovation must be driven from the ground upwards, with local government taking the lead. But how this will happen, especially at a time of severe spending constraint, is an open question. Our commission will aim to find practical answers. It is no exaggeration to say this is one of the most fascinating and urgent tasks in current British politics.”